One for sorrow

There are occasions that bring the keenness of the razor’s edge of luck we all ride into sharp relief, never more so than when an untimely death is sprayed across a beautiful day in spring, that season which stands for everything antithetical to a sudden, brutal end. As I drove to my first game of the season, top down, sun shining, nothing but good things to look forward to, my day took on a manichaean hue. Continue reading

Tea and empathy

This morning, I woke in the usual fashion – headbutted by a ginger cat.

He sat on my laptop, tried to do some private browsing, and that was me awake.

I read this: terry pratchett – choosing to die

I’ve blogged on this subject before, and while one part of me wants to slap Sam Wollaston around the face for being a smug, insensitive little prick, the other part of me thinks he’s just embarrassed. Naturally I have no idea of his experience of death, either his own or anyone else’s, nor of his personal views on assisted suicide, but he fails, it seems, to understand that this is not about death, but about life.

The great gift we have is autonomy. For those of us a little closer to our end, or perhaps merely closer to the knowledge of how it will come about, it is about making sure that our last act is just that; ours.

Sam, no doubt, cannot remember how many cups of tea he consumed while watching the programme and writing his little article. His neat little trick of appending a piece on the slaughtering of cows was simply crass, however. Or genius – I can’t quite decide. Still, I’m sure he feels very pleased with himself. Or very embarrassed.

He perhaps needs to learn that it’s not about the tea. To paraphrase Clinton, it’s the autonomy, stupid.

For more on assisted suicide, see Care, not Killing? Behave